Downsides to Living in Cartagena: An Expat Perspective – 2021 Update - Medellin Guru
Cartagena is popular coastal city in Colombia with a growing number of foreigners living in the city. But there are downsides to living in Cartagena.

11 Downsides to Living in Cartagena: An Expat Perspective – 2021 Update

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12 thoughts on “11 Downsides to Living in Cartagena: An Expat Perspective – 2021 Update”

    1. Are covid tests still required going to Cartagena from Ft Lauderdale?

      • Yes, see our popular article – https://medellinguru.com/colombia-require-covid-19-test/

        You have 3 options – 1. Get a PCR test with negative results taken a maximum of 96 hours before your flight and you do not have to quarantine., 2. If you don’t have a PCR test, quarantine for 14 days when arrive in Colombia., 3. Get a PCR test when you arrive in Colombia and quarantine until you receive negative results.

    2. i am looking for rental opportunities in guatape, jardin or jerico, long term w pets. i can’t seem to find anything relevant to help me.any suggestons about living in either of these places would be appreciated.

    3. Interesting information. Thanks you..

    4. Ken Overholt February 11, 2020

      I think poor water quality should be included in the downsides of most places in Colombia. I have traveled extensively in Mexico, Central and South America without issues, but I got the worst case of turista in my life while traveling to Barranquilla and Santa Marta. It was very severe.

    5. I agree with your points made about Cartagena and Colombia in general. I would like to add one more consideration… and that is water quality (and quantity) in Cartagena. You must use purified or bottled water for cooking and washing dishes. 10 years ago, I became very sick after drinking fruit juices served at a well-known all-inclusive.

      • John Wells April 18, 2019

        I enjoyed the new Article about Cartagena. Do you have a similar articles on Medellin and Cali ? Also I’d like to subscribe to your Newsletter. Thanks.

    6. I enjoyed visiting Cartagena but it is too miserably hot for me to live there.

      • Gregory Fronczak January 5, 2021

        I’m planning on coming to Bogota on the 10 of February. And then travel to Cartagena.
        I’m sure not clear if I want to get married , what are the proper documents I need.
        What documents do i need apostilled.
        I have my original birth certificate and my passport. I cant find my divorce papers and she passed away more than 8 years ago.

        • See our article about Colombia’s marriage visa that has a list of documents required – https://medellinguru.com/marriage-visa/

          • David Parker February 16, 2021

            I was in Cartagena last week (February 2021). I am from Miami, normally considered pretty hot. But it was hot for me. However the Old Town, Getsemani, and Boca Grande was a vibrant, lively, sexy, simpatico place. Stay in the shade or indoors mid day, nap and be better rested for evening walks or parties. I had no problem with the water in the tourist area. Perhaps the main city is more of a concern. Although I did not drink straight from the tap, I did eat fruits and veggies that were washed in it, and drank lots of juices with ice and would think made/ diluted with local water. Typically I avoid everything like that but having recently read a article from a reliable source, that said it was “OK to drink the water”. I risked it. And it was so hot, and the fresh juice so enticing. No street cart juice though. I travel a lot, and used to get sick at least once a trip. But having gone vegan three years ago it seems that there are far fewer issues. Perhaps it is improper food preparation of meats and poultry, coupled with poor water, that causes distress. Also water in the city might be good, but the restaurant or street food vendor from a small Pueblo near by may not have fresh clean water or proper food preparation hygiene at developed countries standards.
            The food was great in the tourist places. A little expensive for Colombia standards, but still very affordable compared to USA prices.
            I also felt very safe, though I am always cautious and avoid dark allies, or sketchy areas.

            Strongly recommend Cartagena to anyone looking for a hot, thriving , noisy, sexy, vibrant place to visit.

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